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Re: english text only?

From: Greg A. Woods
Subject: Re: english text only?
Date: Tue, 19 Mar 2002 18:44:02 -0500 (EST)

[ On , March 19, 2002 at 14:20:19 (-0600), Mark A. Flacy wrote: ]
> Subject: Re: english text only?
> List?  What list?  I'm reading this in the newsgroup

"info-cvs" is primarily, and was originally, a mailing list, hosted at

It is also gatewayed to the GNUsenet system for those who prefer to use
a news reader to follow forums like this (esp. in context with the other
gnu.* groups).  If I'm not mistaken all the GNUsenet groups are
available as mailing lists, and most started as mailing lists too, only
becoming GNUsenet groups when the volume of postings warranted.

Once upon a time many people received their e-mail and *Usenet feeds
over very slow and/or very expensive long-distance links.  Having
multiple people at a given site subscribe to multiple mailing
lists made it cheaper and more effective to use news instead of e-mail.
Once upon a time GNUsenet did not enjoy as wide a distribution as the
rest of Usenet (partly because many sites received their news feeds over
very slow and/or very expensive long-distance links).  These days almost
everyone gets their e-mail and news feeds over Internet links.  People
who read news often read it from a VERY large shared system at their
ISP's location, and most large ISPs still running their own news servers
get a full news feed and GNUsenet is only a very very tiny fraction of
the entire feed.  However even without the alt hierarchy and binary
groups a newsfeed is still very large and sometimes beyond the abilities
of the average smaller ISP.  So while GNUsenet now enjoys nearly 100%
equivalent distribution to the non-binary parts of Usenet, not nearly so
many people have truly free or inclusive-priced news reading and posting
service.  Also, the average ISP no longer cares about the waste of a few
duplicate mailing list subscriptions, what with the vast wastage their
upstream connections suffer from HTTP et al (even with transparent
caching servers in place).  Finally for many of us news is still too
littered with bad behaviour and spam (many many orders of magnitude
worse now all year 'round than it ever was at the beginning of the
school year in days gone by).  So, I suspect the majority of readers of
and posters to this forum now access it as a mailing list.  Even though
I have effectively free high-speed access to a news server that keeps
all non-binary groups for 30 days, I can't be bothered to look at it.
(and once upon a time I ran a rather busy full-feed news server myself,
back in the days when I could receive a feed and push more than two more
copies back out on the same Telebit modem, along with all my e-mail! :-)

W.R.T. spam, once upon a time the majority of the spam in this forum
came from cross- and direct-posted Gnusenet spam.  That situation seems
to have either improved, or been drastically overshadowed by the
enormous amount of spam now arriving directly to the mailing list
re-distribution address.

Interestingly not all mailing lists suffer so badly as this
one.  I was reminded by the end-of-month notice that I still stubscribe
to one other list, and I don't remember ever getting any spam on
it.  I do not know why it is spam free while info-cvs is not.

                                                                Greg A. Woods

+1 416 218-0098;  <address@hidden>;  <address@hidden>;  <address@hidden>
Planix, Inc. <address@hidden>; VE3TCP; Secrets of the Weird <address@hidden>

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